Fri Aug 2015
In southern Italy they have a secret to help you survive after a large meal: it’s called limoncello. This bright yellow liquor is made from juicy lemons, giving it a delicious refreshing taste. A welcome ‘digestivo’ if you’ve already made it through the traditional Italian structure of Aperitivo, Antipasto, Primo, Second, Contorno, Insalata, Formaggi e frutta, Dolce & Caffe! Even if you haven’t quite managed this formal banquet and have opted for a lighter Cena, or rather, dinner, this little tipple is well worth a try.
Limoncello is best served chilled in a shot glass as a glorious conclusion to your summer dinning experience. There is nothing better to ease your digestion after three (or more) courses and a strong coffee. Sip your limoncello al fresco before taking a late evening stroll: it will make you feel lighter and more relaxed!
Limoncello is typical of regions blessed with the right climate allowing lemon trees to grow abundantly, like Campania and Sicily. On the Amalfi Coast the sea breeze diffuses the scent of citrus everywhere, while the plants grow on terraced fields surrounding towns and villages. Lemons are also the main decorative motif of ceramics produced on Capri, which shows the importance of these fruits in the region.
Liquors similar to limoncello are also produced with other fruits: meloncello with melons, fragoncello with strawberries, mandarinello with tangerines and arancello with oranges. They are all delicious! Many restaurants make their own limoncello and will offer it to you at the end of the meal, often for free. Go on, say yes!